Thursday, 1 September 2005

Vancouver - A trip to the land of metric

Vancouver Marina A weekend in Vancouver. The trip up from Seattle was painless enough apart from the grilling by the Canadian border guard, who seemed annoyed that he couldn’t refuse us entry.

I can recommend The Victorian Hotel. It was cheap (for downtown,) central, clean, independent, quirky and quiet. Quiet is good. We checked in, abandoned the car and walked around town in the sunshine, admiring the views across the sound to the mountains beyond.

On Sunday we hired bikes and pootled around Stanley Park for a few hours in the sunshine. I was pleased to find a game of cricket in progress. The clouds were scraping the hills on the other side of the water, which is why we’d saved Grouse Mountian until the Monday.

Monday: rain. Not forecasted. It cleared after breakfast but the clouds remained. We stubbornly set off up into the hills anyway. We tried to find the Lynn Creek suspension bridge, a free version of the Capilano bridge but marginally smaller and in the next valley over. We actually ended up in the Lynn Headwater park, which was great. There was hardly anyone there. We set off on a short walk through the fir trees past huge ancient stumps left from the first time it was logged.

On the second attempt we found the suspension bridge, bounced our way over and watched a couple of nutters jumping over the waterfalls in the creek below. They’d obviously chosen to ignore the gory warning signs explaining the multitude of horrific ways you can drown under a waterfall.

After a picnic lunch in the woods by the bridge we headed home, stopping to admire the distant view of Vancouver from Crescent Beach. That was a strange little community. Very peaceful and more lifeguards than swimmers.

All in all a great, very relaxing trip with some of the best elements for a good time: good food, good sleeping, great views… and not getting mugged even when you accidentally walk though the crack-ridden areas after dark.

More pictures here.

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